It means spending less time in public places, where a lot of people are around.
Everyone is now advised to follow self-distancing measures, especially the over-70s, pregnant women and adults
normally eligible for a flu jab.
How to self-distance
Work from home whenever possible
Avoid all unnecessary travel
Stay away from pubs, clubs, theatres and other such social venues
Avoid gatherings with friends and families wherever possible
What am I allowed to do when social distancing?
You can go for a walk or run outdoors if you stay 2m (6ft) away from others
You can see family and friends if it's essential
You can walk your dog
You can provide essential care for elderly relatives and neighbours if you
have no symptoms
You can go to the shops to buy food and groceries
What is self-isolation?
Self-isolating means staying at home and not leaving it, other than for exercise. Don't go
to work, school or public areas during this time.
If possible, you should not go out even to buy food or other essentials. If you are unable to get supplies
delivered, you should do what you can to limit social contact when you do leave the house.
Who should self-isolate?
Everyone who shows coronavirus symptoms - a fever of above 37.8C, a persistent cough or breathing problem - and
everyone who lives in the same house or flat as someone with symptoms.
If you live alone, you must stay at home for seven days from the day symptoms
If you or someone you live with has symptoms, then the entire household needs
to isolate for 14 days from the day they start
Anyone in the household who starts displaying new symptoms during the 14-day
period will need to stay at home for seven more days, regardless of how long they have already been isolated
The person with the symptoms should stay in a well-ventilated room with a window that can be opened, and keep
away from other people in the home.
People are being advised not to ring NHS 111 or their GP to report their symptoms unless they are worried.
Who else should self-isolate?
People with very serious health conditions need to be shielded from the virus for about 12 weeks, using special
isolation and precaution measures to be announced soon. This group includes:
Cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy or radiotherapy
People with severe diseases or on dialysis
People with cystic fibrosis or severe asthma
What happens if you have a vulnerable person living with you during
You should keep at least 2m away from a vulnerable person (such as pregnant women, the elderly or those with an
underlying health condition) during any period of isolation, according to PHE.
Limit time spent together in shared spaces, like kitchens, and keep all rooms well-ventilated. If they can, the
vulnerable person should take their meals back to their room to eat.
A vulnerable person should also use separate towels from the rest of the household. If possible, they should use
a separate bathroom. If that is not possible, the bathroom should be cleaned every time it's used (for example,
wiping surfaces with which you have come into contact).
People living with someone in isolation should wash their hands often, using soap and water for at least 20 seconds -
especially after coming into contact with them.
Personal waste (like tissues) should be double-bagged and put aside for 72 hours before being put in your outside
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